Summer Things to do

Overnight Trips Close to Jersey City

Overnight Trips Close to Jersey City

There are so many great weekend getaway options for Jersey City families. We live in a great location and close to so much. So, pack your overnight bag and hop into the car. Here are some overnight excursions or long weekends. Here is the list of Overnight trips close to Jersey City or Hoboken.

Woodstock, NY

 The beautiful little town of Woodstock in upstate New York is only about a 2-hour drive from Jersey City. There is so much to do in the area, and it’s a great weekend getaway option for winter and spring. On my last trip to Woodstock, I found a cute cottage to rent on HomeAway. Many offer hot tubs and pools, which are great for relaxation once the kiddies are in bed, and lots of property for older kids to play. You can even get a larger house and split with friends! There are so many things to do in Woodstock. Dining out is never a problem – there are many fantastic restaurant options. Also, Woodstock has an extensive art community with galleries and shops galore. There are many family-friendly activities, as well. The Woodstock Farm Animal Sanctuary opens for the season in April (open weekends only). This is where kids can meet various animals and tour the entire sanctuary. They also have a guesthouse bed and breakfast that you can stay in year-round. You can get arty at Fiber Flame Studios and take a class or walk in for crafts and art for all ages. Bethel Woods Center for the Arts offers shows, performances, workshops, and more.

The Jersey Shore, NJ

The summer isn’t the only significant time to go “down the shore.” Spring is the most enjoyable time to enjoy some of the Jersey Shore offers. Avoid the lines, waits, and crazy crowds of people and have a more laid-back visit. There are endless possibilities when it comes to the shore. I grew up on the Jersey Shore, so I know how fun it is during spring. Here are just a few of my faves. You can take a day trip to any of these places, find a hotel, and stay overnight.

Jenkinson’s Boardwalk

Jenkinson’s Boardwalk in Point Pleasant Beach is a family favorite. The boardwalk gets crazy during the summer, but most things are open year-round (and more available as the weather warms up). Visit

Jenkinson’s Aquarium, when it gets a bit warmer, ride the amusement rides, get sugared up at the Sweet Shop, or take a relaxing stroll on the beach. The kids need to get out and run after our winter, so let them breathe in some fresh ocean air while doing it! Buy tickets at the boardwalk from 11 am – 6 pm or online all weekend and get reduced rates on ticket books for the entire season.

Asbury Park

Spend the day in Asbury Park. Whether you are checking out the activities on the boardwalk or getting something delicious to eat, there’s a lot to do in Asbury! The Silverball Pinball Museum offers many classic pinball machines to play with and even has a café. If you have a kid interested in ghosts and the paranormal, check out Paranormal Books & Curiosities and the museum that features exhibits like “haunted objects” and “The Jersey Devil: Fact or Fiction.” They even do a walking ghost tour! Finally, Hot Sand is a glassblowing studio where you can blow your unique glasswork or make a quick cast of your hand.

Cape May

Cape May is a great place to drive to for the day (about 2.5 hours from JC), but the city offers many fun overnight options. There are many fun historic beds and breakfasts in Cape May. You may think these are only for couples, and although many B&Bs are “childfree,” Cape May offers many child-friendly B&B options. Check out this list of historic B&B accommodations that allow children; some have age restrictions, so check each website. Many hotels are child-friendly, like the Victorian Motel and even the luxurious Congress Hall. During the day, take kids to the NJ Audubon Nature Center, take a family workshop, learn about local wildlife, enjoy a trip to the Cape May County Zoo, or take a trolley tour. Cape May boasts many delicious dining options. Some good kid-friendly choices include Cape May Peanut Butter Co., Della’s 5&10 Soda Fountain, The Lobster House, and many more.


Mystic, Connecticut

This seaside town in Connecticut is about a 2.5-hour drive from Jersey City. It is an excellent family destination with many activities for everyone to enjoy. One of the big draws in the area is the Mystic Aquarium, which offers countless exhibits (Beluga Whales, Titanic, Arctic Watch, and many more), a 4-D Theater, and programs like the Encounter Program, which allows kids to get up-close and personal with their favorite animals. Plus, they offer family programs for various age groups. Another popular Mystic activity is riding on the high seas and embarking on a half-day or sunset sail! They offer different times of day and even private charters for larger groups. Olde Mistick Village is a fun-filled historical shopping experience for the whole family. Enjoy more than 60 small shops in a colonial setting. For your little (or big) train enthusiasts, don’t miss the Essex Steam Train and Riverboat, the country’s only steam train and riverboat connection. Plus, dino lovers will enjoy The Dinosaur Place at Nature’s Art Village in nearby Montville, CT. The area hosts many family-friendly accommodations, including The Comfort Inn Mystic, Taber Inne & Suites. Click here for a list of hotels for families. Regarding food, no trip to Mystic is complete without visiting the infamous Mystic Pizza (the one from the 80s movie) or trying S&P Oysters for great seafood with a decent children’s menu.

Hershey, PA

Touted as “the sweetest place on earth,” if your family is the amusement park kinda family with a sweet tooth, this place is for you! There are so many things to do for families in Hershey. First, the obvious big draw, Hershey Park, offers everything your typical amusement park would offer but includes chocolate. This is more of a summer park, but they will open for two spring weekends in April (April 12-13 and 18-20). My favorite childhood attraction was Hershey’s Chocolate World, which offers a factory tour to see how chocolate is made! In April, there are several dates for breakfast with the Easter Bunny and characters; check here for dates and information. A new attraction they offer is called XOXO, and it allows you to create your own Hershey’s Kiss using the perfect mix of your favorite colors and flavors! A more calm activity is visiting Hershey Gardens, a flower garden with attractions including the Butterfly House and the Children’s Garden. The gardens open for the season on April 5. Another fun option is ZooAmerica, a year-round 11-acre walk-through zoo. Being a family destination, Hershey, PA has many family-friendly accommodation options. The Hotel Hershey currently offers spring packages, and the Hershey Lodge offers more affordable accommodations for families. As with hotels, many dining options exist for families, including Hershey’s Pantry, Smoke BBQ Joint, and many more.

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